God cannot forgive: a priest attached to money and a priest who mistreats people

Pope Francis: Turning churches into ‘businesses’ is a scandal
Pope Francis celebrates a Mass of Thanksgiving for two new Canadian Saints in St. Peter's Basilic a on Oct. 12, 2014. Credit: Lauren Cater/CNA.

Pope Francis celebrates a Mass of Thanksgiving for two new Canadian Saints in St. Peter’s Basilic a on Oct. 12, 2014. Credit: Lauren Cater/CNA.

.- Pope Francis condemned priests and laity who turn their parishes into a “business” by charging for things such as baptisms, blessings and Mass intentions – calling it a scandal that’s hard to forgive.

“It is interesting: the people of God can forgive their priests, when they are weak; when they slip on a sin, the people know how to forgive them,” the Pope told mass attendees in the Vatican’s Saint Martha guesthouse on Nov. 21.

“But there are two things that the people of God cannot forgive: a priest attached to money and a priest who mistreats people. This they cannot forgive! It is scandalous…”

The Pope centered his homily on the day’s Gospel from Luke in which Jesus turns over tables and drives out those who were selling things inside the temple, saying it is a sacred place meant for prayer and not for business.

While the many people who went to the temple to pray were good and searched for God, they were forced to pay in order to make an offering, the Pope explained, noting that although the temple was a sacred place to these, “there was corruption that scandalized the people.”

He recalled the biblical story of Anna, the mother of Samuel, who was a humble woman that went to the temple and whispered her prayers in silence, while the priest and his two sons were corrupt and exploited the pilgrims who came.

“I think of how our attitude can scandalize people with unpriestly habits in the Temple: the scandal of doing business, the scandal of worldliness,” the Bishop of Rome said, observing how many parishes have a price list readily available for baptisms, blessings and Mass intentions.

The Pope then recounted the story of a young couple who were a part of a group of college students he led shortly after being ordained. When they decided to get married, they went to their parish to ask for the civil ceremony and Mass together.

When they asked, the couple was told that they couldn’t have the Mass in addition to the ceremony because the time slots for the ceremony were limited to only 20 minutes, the couple needed to pay for two time slots in order to have the Mass as well.

“This is the sin of scandal” the pontiff explained, and alluded to the scripture passage where Jesus tells those who cause scandal that it is “better to be thrown into the sea.”

When those who manage God’s temple and its ministry, including both priests and lay people, become businessmen, “people are scandalized. And we are responsible for this. The laity too! Everyone,” the Roman Pontiff continued.

Preventing scandal is the responsibility is everyone, he said, because if we see this business-mentality going on in our parishes we need to have the courage to say something to the priest.

“It is scandalous when the Temple, the House of God, becomes a place of business, as in the case of that wedding: the church was being rented out.”

Pope Francis noted how when Jesus made his whip and started driving the people out of the temple it was not because he was angry, but rather because he was filled with the wrath of God and zeal for his house.

Jesus, he said, has “an issue with money because redemption is free; it is God’s free gift, He comes to brings us the all-encompassing gratuity of God’s love.”

So when a church or a parish start doing business it’s like saying that salvation is no longer free, the Pope explained, which is why Jesus takes his whip out in order to purify the temple of the corrupt.

He noted how the feast of the day commemorates the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary in the Temple, saying that Mary enters the temple as a young, simple woman like Anna, and prayed that she would help keep God’s temple pure.

“May she teach all of us, pastors and those who have pastoral responsibility, to keep the Temple clean, to receive with love those who come, as if each one were the Blessed Virgin.”

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About The Voice Of Bombay's Catholic Laity

Bombay Laity Ezekiel’s Chapter 3 Task as Watchman 17 “Son of man, I have made you a watchman for the people of Israel; so hear the word I speak and give them warning from me. 18 When I say to a wicked person, ‘You will surely die,’ and you do not warn them or speak out to dissuade them from their evil ways in order to save their life, that wicked person will die for[b] their sin, and I will hold you accountable for their blood. 19 But if you do warn the wicked person and they do not turn from their wickedness or from their evil ways, they will die for their sin; but you will have saved yourself.
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3 Responses to God cannot forgive: a priest attached to money and a priest who mistreats people

  1. SECULAR / DIOCESAN clergy in India — a breed of vermin — ARE YOU LISTENING ??????

  2. Do you believe they are listening. They are a breed of snakes and vipers who have plundered that which belongs to Our Lord Jesus Christ. We will stand up against their actions tooth and nail.Yet however I dread to be at their bedside at the time The Lord calls them.It would be just too late for them to repent. Do not steal what belongs to The Lord.

  3. francislobo5 says:

    Priests have become more greedy and business minded. God will not forgive the dealing done with my parents by parish priest of Udupi Church in 1991. In stead of uniting a family Fr.Peter S Noronha divided then for acquiring 11 acre land in Moodubelle . All bishops and clergy is silent on this case and presently we are fighting the case in civil courts of Udupi against Udupi Church -Mother of Sorrows .We will continue our fight for justice to generations as this act of a priest can not be forgiven .

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